The Karnataka High Court recently declined to quash criminal proceedings against an advocate accused of assaulting and harassing an intern who was working at a law firm [Vasanth Aditya J v State of Karnataka]
Single-judge Justice V Srishananda stated that the case against the advocate Vasanth Aditya J cannot be quashed at this stage as the investigation into the cognizable offenses alleged against him is still underway.
“Relief under Section 482 CrPC as sought for by the petitioner cannot be granted by this court for more than one reason. Firstly, the investigation is still under progress and police may file appropriate report after thorough investigation. Secondly, expressing any opinion at this stage in respect of the merits of the matter, the rights of the parties would be put to jeopardy. Thirdly, no Court can stop an investigation in respect of a cognizable offence unless a particular person makes out a case that the very complaint is frivolous in nature and results in abuse of process of court,” the order stated.
The complainant was working with a law firm, Kreetam Law Associates as an intern when she requested for an internship certificate from the petitioner.
It was alleged that there was an altercation and a water bottle was thrown at her due to which she was injured on her chest and her mobile phone was thrown away. It was further alleged that obnoxious and objectionable message were also sent to her phone.
Thereafter, she lodged a complaint against the petitioner for offences under Section 67 (publishing or transmitting obscene material in electronic form) of the Information Technology Act, and sections 506 (criminal intimidation), 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) 341 (wrongful restraint) 324 (voluntarily causing hurt by dangerous weapons or means) and 354 (assault of criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) of the Indian Penal Code.
The petitioner then approached the court seeking for the case against him be quashed claiming that the small incident had been blown out of proportion by the police in active collusion with the complainant.
The Court noted that the petitioner himself had filed a complaint regarding the incident which necessitates a thorough investigation into the events that transpired.
“Who is the aggressor party, what exactly that transpired are all subject matter of the investigation and after a thorough investigation, police may file appropriate report under section 173 Cr.P.C. Till such time, this Court cannot form any opinion by considering the material on record at this stage”, the Court said in its order.
Therefore, it opined that as the investigation into a cognizable offence is still under progress, the Court cannot interfere unless it is shown that the complaint is frivolous and an abuse of the process of the court.
Advocate B Ramesh represented the petitioner and High Court Government Pleader K Rahul Rai represented the State.
Also, Read – https://indianlawinfo.in/religious-education-in-public-schools-educational-institutions/
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